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Not ‘like family’ after all (Part 2): Shelter in hurricane’s path warns it will euthanize animals

After Hurricane Katrina many animals were abandoned — more than 100,000, according to the Louisiana SPCA. As many as 70,000 died throughout the Gulf Coast.

REIS THEBAULT: ‘For many pets that have been left behind or abandoned after their owners fled this coastal county and surrounding communities, the final days before the Hurricane Florence hits could mean life or death. Local, government-run animal shelters were filling up fast, and in many jurisdictions, such as Pender County, shelters that hit capacity must “make space,” Jewel Horton, manager of Pender County Animal Shelter, told The Washington Post on Wednesday.

This means ‘putting down’ animals to reduce overcrowding. “We are avoiding euthanasia at all costs,” Horton said. “That’s why we’re begging for assistance”… Organizations such as the Pender County Humane Society are helping to facilitate adoption and are working to clear space in the shelter without having to sacrifice any animals. The roughly 20 dogs and cats in Raffee’s van — bound for a rescue group in Pennsylvania — are animals that now won’t face euthanasia…

Organizations such as the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals and the Humane Society of the United States have become more aggressive about responding to disasters, especially after Hurricane Katrina… One poll after the devastating storm found that 44 percent of people who chose not to evacuate did so because they didn’t want to leave their pets behind. But still, many animals were abandoned — more than 100,000, according to the Louisiana SPCA. As many as 70,000 died throughout the Gulf Coast’. SOURCE…

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